U.S. announces new sanctions to curb Iran nuclear program
U.S. Treasury imposes sanctions on a state-controlled bank, companies that are fronts for the state shipping line and the air force and missile commands of Iran's Revolutionary Guard.
The U.S. Treasury on Wednesday announced new sanctions on Iran to curb its nuclear program, including blacklisting a state-controlled bank, companies that are fronts for the state shipping line, and the air force and missile commands of Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps.
The actions are the first set of U.S. measures to implement the latest round of United Nations Security Council sanctions on Iran approved last week. They prohibit U.S. transactions with the blacklisted entities and seek to freeze any assets they may have under U.S. jurisdiction.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner told a news briefing that more actions to increase financial pressure on Iran would be taken in coming weeks.
"We will continue to target Iran's support for terrorist organizations. We will continue to focus on Iran's Revolutionary Guard," he said. "And we will continue to expose Iran's efforts to evade international sanctions."
The Treasury said it added Post Bank of Iran to its list of specially designated proliferators of weapons of mass destruction, marking the 16th bank in Iran that it has sought to cut off from the international financial system.
Since Bank Sepah was sanctioned in 2007, Post Bank has stepped in to disguise international transactions for it. Previously, Post Bank only operated domestically, the Treasury said.
The Treasury's action also aims to thwart Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) from skirting previous sanctions by renaming vessels and shifting them to new front companies.
It blacklisted five such companies, identified 27 new vessels blocked under the sanctions, and updated entries for 71 others whose names had been changed.
The new Treasury sanctions also take further aim at the Iran Revolutionary Guard Corps, blacklisting its air force and missile commands over their activities in the development of ballistic missiles. It had previously sanctioned Revolutionary Guard entities over their support for terrorist activities and Iran's nuclear and missile programs.